Hotel Le Marais
What We Love
- Perfect French Quarter spot on Conti Street, between Bourbon Street’s debauchery and Royal Street’s antique shops
- Free: WiFi, a welcome drink at Vive! bar and a simple continental breakfast
- Shady brick courtyard with a small saltwater pool
What To Know
- Despite its proximity to one of the biggest parties on the planet, this is no party hotel
- The hotel bar is small and best for a happy hour sip by the pool
- No room service or restaurant
- Free WiFi
- Parking On Site
A resemblance to Starwood’s boutique single-letter brand is undeniable, down to the violet hues, oversize armchairs and glossy finishes in the diminutive lobby and bar; the huge black-and-white photos by Bonita Waesche of the Louisiana bayou provide just enough sense of place. Outside, a leafy brick courtyard mixes Big Easy charm — foliage and gas lamps, with wrought iron and plantation shutters above — with mod patio furniture around a small pool and mood lighting after dark.
Bed and Bath
Most of Le Marais’s 66 guestrooms wrap around the courtyard, though some look out over Conti Street, and are a serene oasis from the madness outside. The palette of violet, rose and black in the lobby carries over into the sparkling guestrooms, where it’s limited to striped carpeting and accent pillows. Dark wood furniture adds a touch of elegance, and an iPod/iPhone dock, a 42-inch flat-screen TV, a large desk with an ergonomic chair and speedy WiFi keep you connected to the modern world. Behind a sliding door the black tile bathroom features a walk-in shower, mounted magnifying mirror and waffle robes.
So much of your time in the Big Easy is spent drinking, often at a bar or around a dinner table, but sometimes wandering down the street. Le Marais’s bar, Vive!, hosts a lovely happy hour where you can sip a Sazerac by the pool — or in the pool, if you wish.
In the Area
New Orleans is the home of the cocktail, and every sip comes with a story. Start your boozy odyssey off with the classics and see where they take you. Napoleon House was once offered up as a refuge to the exiled Petit Caporal and today is known for its Pimm’s Cup, an Anglophile fave mixing a splash of lemonade and soda with Pimm’s No. 1. Then get dizzy on Vieux Carrés (rye, cognac, sweet vermouth, benedictine and bitters) at the Hotel Monteleone’s Carousel Bar & Lounge, a former haunt of Tennessee Williams, among other writers. A new breed of New York City mixologist migrated south after Hurricane Katrina to stake its claim as the city reinvents itself. SoBou pairs mixological magic by Brooklyn ex-pat RyeGirl (née Abigail Deirdre Gullo, formerly of Red Hook’s Fort Defiance) and food by the culinary team behind NOLA’s legendary Commander’s Palace. Sidle up to the bar and start with her Taylor Bird Sazerac (a Pernod absinthe rinse with cognac, Sazerac rye, bitters and a twist).
How to Get There
My family and I really enjoyed our stay here. The staff were good and the rooms were beautiful. There were restaurants all around to sample the local cuisine and it was right by Bourbon Street, but sheltered from the noise. Would stay here again if I went back to New Orleans. Pierre was very helpful!
I was greeted at the front door by a warm smile and after a 8 hour drive, that was welcoming. My husband and I decided to head there for our honeymoon and it was great! The hotel staff was informative, kind and truly seemed to care for people and our concerns like their own. Honestly the best staff I've ever had the pleasure encounter. The beds were comfortable, the room was clean (no carpet) made me feel like it was very clean. I didn't want to leave...but the weather wasn't great so we had to go. We will be back though! Thank you!!
Our sheets had blood on them, indicating that they had not been changed. The staff however, were amazing. I suggest microwaves in the rooms, especially being near plenty of restaurants and not being able to finish full meals at them until later when back in the room.